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4/23/2009
03:49 PM
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Review: Tweetie, A Sweet Twitter Client For Mac

An alternative to the clutter of desktop Twitter apps such as TweetDeck, Tweetie packs a lot of power beneath its sublimely simple, cheerful interface.


Tweetie Twitter Client For Mac

Tweetie, atebit's Twitter client for Mac
(click for larger image)

This story was updated April 24, 2009 at 8:57 AM.

I wasn't looking for a new Twitter desktop client. I was happy with TweetDeck. But then came Tweetie, a Mac version of the popular Twitter client for the iPhone. It won me over with simplicity and a clean design.

With Tweetie, I'm trading in the desktop-hogging multi-column TweetDeck for a cheerful, cartoonish view of Twitter that does a lot without cluttering up the screen.

Apple blogger John Gruber, writing at Daring Fireball, nails it: Tweetie is "visually quiet. Most of the new desktop Twitter clients I’ve checked out try to show more at once. Twitter by its nature is inherently distracting; I want a client that doesn’t exacerbate it."

Tweetie for the Mac, from vendor atebits LLC, does a lot, but it stays out of the way when you don't want it. Rather than TweetDeck's multiple columns, Tweetie has a single-column view of Twitter, with multiple tabs to access the main Twitter stream, @mentions, direct messages, and Twitter searches.

Tweetie notifies you of unread messages in each view by adding a blue dot to the appropriate tab (see image).

It also lets you access multiple accounts -- in theory. In fact, I found it difficult to configure a second Twitter account, and have been unable to configure a third and fourth; I keep getting authentication errors, even after checking and confirming the logins and passwords. I don't know if this is a problem with Tweetie or with the Twitter service.

(Yes, I know -- four Twitter accounts. And those are only the ones I manage; I've actually set up at least nine. There is something seriously wrong with me.)

Features, Shortcuts

Tweetie has a variety of features and keyboard shortcuts to make tweeting easy and fast.

Double-click on any tweet to display the conversation it's a part of.

Right-click on any tweet to choose options, including retweeting, replying, or sending a direct message to the user.

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